The Westpark office building in Algiers has been sold to local purchasers Thomas Guinan Jr. and Harold Callais II. The building which is the third largest on the West Bank is located off General DeGaulle Drive. It is a six-story, 109,000-square-foot office building that is the center of Westpark Office Park. The purchase of the building included 7 acres of green space, 500 parking spaces and two helicopter landing pads. The building was built in 1983 and is approximately seven minutes from the Central Business District and has direct access to major shopping and residential areas such as the Parks of Plaquemines.
Until this year, the only tenant to occupy the whole building was FEMA. The Federal Emergency Management Agency moved into the building after Hurricane Katrina. The new owners plan to lease to multiple local and regional businesses for now but in the future they might convert the office building to condominiums.
The previous owner of the property was Hertz Investment Group which is based out of California. They purchased the building for $7 million in 2005. They are a real estate investment company that focuses on acquiring, marketing and managing extraordinary properties around the United States. The successful company has revitalized many buildings that include the Wiltern Center and Park Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles, Verizon Building in Pittsburg and Dominion Tower in New Orleans.
Hertz Investment Group is known as the “dominant landlord” of the Central Business District. The company has acquired and still owns many New Orleans spots including First Bank & Trust Tower, the Poydras Center, the former Texaco building, 400 Poydras Tower, One Shell Square, the Dominion Tower and the Energy Centre. These are all premier properties located on Poydras Street. Their latest acquisition is One Shell Square which is the largest office building in Louisiana. This is said to be the largest acquisition in Hertz’s history which was for more than $417 million. This goes to show that New Orleans has a strong local office building market. “This a great vote of confidence in the local office building market,” said real estate analyst Wade Ragas.